Chateau Kefraya Comte de M 2013
The 2013 Comtesse de M is a blend of 61% Chardonnay, 30% Viognier and 9% Vermentino, aged for 24 months in French oak (90% new). This has fine weight, precision and focus. In most ways, this is beautifully done and there is just a hint of spice on the finish. That said, the dominant feature here is the caramel and vanilla from all that new wood. It smells and tastes of little else in its youth and it was a bit much for me personally. Of course, it is not unusual for a wine that spent so much time in wood to taste of wood when it is newly released, but this is pretty oaky. That said, I tried this again the next day in the spirit of exploration. It was still too woody, but you could also find some fruit and freshness now to go with the wood and concentration. This does so much so well that it would be churlish not to give it a little appreciation, at least now, while granting that it has some questions to answer. If it said "Kistler" on the label, I suspect that they could double the price and no one would object. In the cellar, though, this does have to show some ability to keep pulling in the wood (a better idea, perhaps, might have been simply to have not used so much) while staying fresh. It should have the aging curve to allow me to recommend holding it another year or two. It may age better than expected, actually, but let's see how it proves that. Meanwhile, this will desperately need a food pairing, when you won't notice the oak as much. There were just 1,800 bottles produced.